Tag Archives: husbands

Why My Husband Scares the Crap Out of Our Kids: Football

"I have been rather naughty"

My husband Tom is a pretty mellow fellow. Nothing fazes him much. He has the kind of job where everyone calls him when something goes wrong and he’s the guy who has to find the right person to fix it. If that right person flakes out (which happens often) Tom is the murdered messenger. Yet he still rarely loses his cool.

Tom didn’t get mad at me when I broke a hole in the bathroom sink, or yell at Jake when he drew all over our coffee table in Sharpie, or chew out Mary when she cut her own hair, or lose his patience when Emily comes up with yet another ridiculous teen angst comment. But there’s one thing that really gets his blood boiling enough to scream bloody murder:

Football.

Tom spent all day yesterday watching football. Apparently there were two playoff games – the Ravens vs. the Patriots and the Giants vs. the 49ers. As a sports novice, I imagine that it would be a no-brainer. With everyone abuzz about the Republican primaries, Patriots would certainly squash any bird (definitely Ravens, but probably not Bald Eagles) and I picture someone akin to Jack in the Beanstalk’s 100 foot Giant stomping out a bunch of old men with bad backs panning for gold.

Tom was rooting for the Ravens, and although he usually goes for the Niners (apparently this is the lingo for Forty-niners), he likes the coach for the Giants. (If you’re reading this blog, Tom… see? I do listen to you sometimes. Or did I get it backwards?).

He has been warning the family for weeks that during the playoffs we’d better stay out of the living room and not bother him. This was going to be his day to park himself in front of the tv and enjoy the games.

I need a new definition of the word “enjoy.”

Throughout the afternoon, Tom was screaming. “Go! Go! Go, dammit!” He was also dropping the F-Bomb a lot. Correction. Not dropping the F-Bomb. He was literally hurling it through the air like a cannonball exploding from Big Bertha. Not just once. Several times throughout the day. This from a guy who seldom curses.

When we were first dating, the girls and I were invited to a Superbowl party at his house. Emily was 8 and Mary was 4 and they didn’t know Tom well yet. He had offered to help Emily with a class project during halftime.

Everyone in her 3rd grade class had to build a musical instrument and Emily decided on a harp. God help me. I didn’t know the first thing about how to construct a harp. Tom was handy with tools and had his own power saw. He told us what kind of wood and screws to purchase at Home Depot, so while other guests walked in with chips and seven layer dips, we entered with extra long 2x4s and a baggie filled with bolts.

Superbowl began, and I immediately realized that the sweet man I had been dating was magically transformed into a madman just by adding football to the mix. Tom spent the game pacing and squirming uncontrollably like a dog about to give birth to a boatload of puppies. Then with no warning whatsoever, he jumped up screaming and cursing at the television set.

“Go! Go! Go, dammit! Move, you f@%$ing tool!”

I had heard about such men, but I’d never seen one in action.

My girls were terrified, and frankly so was I. How could a bunch of steroid-laden goons in helmets and padding bumping into each other at great speeds have such an effect on my beau? Would his maniacal anger continue through halftime? Could I trust him in the garage with power tools and my little angel when he was threatening to murder an entire team?

I shouldn’t have been concerned. As soon as the whistle blew for halftime, Tom was back to his normal sweet, mild-mannered self. Which was comforting because Emily and I were literally shaking in our boots.

Flash forward to 7 years later. We’ve been married for 6 years and have added our 5-year old son Jake into the family. Tom still shrieks at those football players for not doing what they’re told – as if he has a direct line from our little house in LA straight to a megaphone on the San Francisco football field.

The kids are used to the screaming by now, and know that it only happens on Sunday afternoons (and Monday nights, and occasionally Thursday nights. Apparently football is on way more often than I would like). The decibel level of Tom’s caterwaul seems to be directly proportional to the number of athletes on the field who are on his fantasy football team. If the kids’ friends come over, we have to warn them in advance that Tom will not be killing anyone, and he’s probably not yelling at them. That is, unless they wander in front of the tv set.

I know there are other men and women out there who spend Sundays screaming at their big screens, just as there are non-sports-loving spouses and partners who invest in either earplugs or an afternoon excursion far, far away from the game. For us, what is our football equivalent?

I am the dialogue editor for the television show Once Upon a Time on ABC, Sunday nights at 8:00. I’m also a big fan. What would be the reaction of our sports-obsessed mates if we all started screaming, “Just kiss her, David! Mary Margaret is your true love!” or “Don’t make that deal with Rumplestiltskin, Emma! The price is too steep!” or “C’mon, Storybrooke! Can’t you all see that the mayor is really the Evil Queen?”

From my experience, the spouses won’t have any reaction. They’ll be too busy screaming at the game that just went into overtime.

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Filed under Anxiety, Humor, Husband, Parenting, Public Schools, Teenagers

My husband asks: “Where’s MY birthday blog?”

There are three things I love about my husband. One: he is very VERY funny. Two: he is not a butt-kisser. Three: he is very low maintenance.

This last feature really came in handy last Wednesday on the day of his 44th birthday. The poor guy had to go into work at 5:00 in the morning and he had a pretty stressful day. He should have come home to a clean house, his favorite home-cooked meal, a terrific gift of the “Thanks… it’s just what I wanted” category, and his adoring children singing a round of “Happy Birthday to You” in front of a delicious birthday cake.

Instead, he walked in the door, and I gave him the following greeting: “Happy birthday, Honey! I have a meeting at the middle school, then a Neighborhood Council meeting. Can we have your birthday dinner on Sunday instead? I know you said you didn’t want a present, so I didn’t get you anything. Can you fix the toilet? It’s backed up again. Here’s your card.”

I handed him a funny birthday card of barnyard animals farting. The kids and I signed it. Our 5-year old drew a picture of SpongeBob next to his name. Then I deserted my husband with three kids, no dinner and a filthy toilet that was a millimeter away from overflowing.

On his birthday.

Did I tell you he was low maintenance? Another husband would already be filing the divorce papers. Actually most husbands.

That night I came home at 9:30 – a half hour after his bedtime (he had to be at work again at 5:00 am) and my husband asked, “Did you write a blog about me?”

“Huh?”

“You wrote a blog about everyone else’s birthday. Did you write one for me?”

I’ve been blogging for four months now, and it never occurred to me that I have a standard birthday blog. I’d be blogging about birthdays every post if that was the case.

Looking back, I did blog about my daughter Emily last July when she turned 15, talking about how I felt like such a clueless mom. In August I wrote a sentimental story on my sister’s birthday called “Life with my Irish Twin.” And last week for my birthday I ranted about how I hate it when people buy me a birthday gift. But my son turned 5 on September 14, and I didn’t blog about him. I informed my husband of this piece of evidence.

“But you wrote about being the oldest kindergarten mom at the school,” he said.

Apparently in my husband’s mind, this was in the realm of the birthday blog tradition.

My husband, who endured a crappy birthday by picking up the pieces of my overcrowded time management, wanted an actual present other than the farting barnyard animals: his own birthday blog.

So here goes…

Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU to my funny, low-maintenance, non-butt-kissing husband, Tom, who always replies to my Patch blogs with something even funnier than I wrote. Thank you for being a great stepdad to my girls by teaching Emily heavy metal guitar and playing endless rounds of pool volleyball with Mary Belle. Thank you for giving me a fart/burp/coconut-loving son who never stops talking. Thank you for helping Emily make a harp in 3rd grade even though we had just started dating and it would confirm early on that I don’t have a crafty bone in my body. Thank you for not leaving me when I volunteered you for grill duty at our block party on the hottest day of the year. Thank you for practicing calligraphy for months to create a beautiful fairy tale book to propose to me. Thank you for smelling like barbeque in the evening because it means I didn’t have to cook dinner. Thank you for making me laugh, fixing door knobs, killing household bugs, washing our dogs, mowing / edging / pool care, cooking way better than I do, being PACE treasurer, dumping the trash (even when it’s raining), watching CSI with me even though it clearly jumped the shark a year ago, plunging toilets and always saving the day when I overcommit… which is often. You are a prince, and I’m so lucky to have you as my husband.

(Big exhale)

Do I still have to cook you dinner on Sunday?

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Filed under Humor, Husband, Multitasking, Parenting